Ancient Monuments

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Chapel of Towie, chapel and graveyard 80m NNW of

A Scheduled Monument in Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside, Aberdeenshire

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Coordinates

Latitude: 57.2071 / 57°12'25"N

Longitude: -2.8794 / 2°52'45"W

OS Eastings: 346974

OS Northings: 813264

OS Grid: NJ469132

Mapcode National: GBR M97N.ZNC

Mapcode Global: WH7MW.R32T

Entry Name: Chapel of Towie, chapel and graveyard 80m NNW of

Scheduled Date: 21 March 2007

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Source ID: SM11719

Schedule Class: Cultural

Category: Ecclesiastical: chapel

Location: Towie

County: Aberdeenshire

Electoral Ward: Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside

Traditional County: Aberdeenshire

Description

The monument comprises an irregularly shaped enclosure in the centre of which is a rectangular stone building, visible as an upstanding earth bank and stone wall. The site lies on a gently S-sloping field to the NNW of the farm at Chapel of Towie.

The chapel is a rectangular structure, measuring 6.5m from NE-SW by 4.5m transversely, built of stone walls, 0.6m wide and up to 0.30m high. A gap in the SE indicates the presence of an entrance. The chapel is enclosed by an irregularly shaped earthen bank, measuring 15.5m from NE-SW by 13m transversely, which has been revetted with stones on its external banks. The bank survives to over 0.7m high and is over 2.5m in width. The area between the chapel and enclosure wall contains no grave markers. The New Statistical Account of Scotland lists the site as a chapel and graveyard with no known dedication. This type of site usually dates from the medieval period and lasted until the Reformation.

The area to be scheduled is polygonal in plan, to include the chapel, enclosure and an area around in which activities associated with the use and construction of the site may survive, as marked in red on the accompanying map.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Statement of Scheduling

Cultural Significance

The monument's archaeological significance can be expressed as follows:

Intrinsic characteristics: The monument is a well-preserved archaeological site. It is unexcavated and therefore has the potential to provide high quality archaeological evidence of medieval ecclesiastical architecture and religious practices.

Contextual characteristics: The monument is a good example of a type known throughout Scotland. The chapel is associated with other known chapel sites in the area (Nether Towie, Kinbattoch, Belnaboth and Ley). The chapel would have been an outlying part of the ecclesiastical organisation centred in the main parish church at Towie where the remains of a medieval church and castle are located.

Associative characteristics: The monument is the product of the medieval church in Scotland and demonstrates the ecclesiastical organisation of the church, the religious beliefs of Scots and the effects of the Reformation.

National Importance

The monument is of national importance because it has an inherent potential to make a significant addition to the understanding of the past, in particular medieval ecclesiastical architecture, church organisation and religious practices. Its relatively good preservation enhances this potential. The loss of this example would affect our ability to understand the medieval and Reformation periods in Scotland.

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

Sources

Bibliography

RCAHMS record the monument as NH41SE 8. It is recorded in the Aberdeenshire SMR as NJ41SE0008.

References:

NSA 1845, THE NEW STATISTICAL ACCOUNT OF SCOTLAND BY THE MINISTERS OF THE RESPECTIVE PARISHES UNDER THE SUPERINTENDENCE OF A COMMITTEE OF THE SOCIETY FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF THE CLERGY, 15v, Edinburgh, Vol. 12, Aberdeenshire, 417.

Ordnance Survey 1st Edition 25.

Ordnance Survey 2nd Edition 25.

Photographs:

RCAHMS 2000, D 57899 CN, Chapelton of Sinnahard (General view from North-West).

RCAHMS 2000, D 57897 CN, Chapelton of Sinnahard (General view from South-South-West).

Source: Historic Environment Scotland

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